(Photo: NASA Earth Observatory images by Joshua Stevens and Jesse Allen)
Without a doubt this has been one of the most active hurricane seasons on record for the east coast. 2017 has produced some of the best surf that has come up this side of the US mainland for quite some time, and it isn't over yet. Even though the past few weeks are considered to be the peak of hurricane season, the season itself isn't "officially" over until until December 1st.
Typically cooler, dryer winds from the northeast tame the wild beasts that are produced from the Atlantic basin later in the year. But Super Storm Sandy didn't hit until October 29th, although technically not a hurricane when it made landfall, it is still a testament to the power and strength that the Atlantic still holds late into the year. This year some of the reports are feared that those traditionally cooler, dryer northwest winds might not be strong enough to push the tropical storms away from the US mainland. They may not even come until late into the fall, extending the time that we see these high energy storms impacting the US. The Jet Stream, which typically pushes the storms away from the US, has been hanging further north this year, increasing the range of these storm to make landfall.
According to AccuWeather Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski, "I think we will have four more named storms this year, after Maria".*
Epic waves for days... in this case weeks. The mighty Atlantic has pumped out storms this year like a well oiled machine placing a new storm on a convaire belt, or in this case the Gulf Stream, every few weeks. Arguably, this is the best time of the year for waves along the east coast... but not normally on this scale.
Kyle Busey, South Carolina
(Photo: Derf Williams easternsurf.com)
Absolute devistation where ever these storms have made landfall. Completely leveling many of the most beutiful islands such as Puerto Rico, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Virgin Islands, and many others. Leaving many of the emergency responders not even knowing where to begin. Some of the devistation is so "complete", like in the case of Turks and Caicos it has yet to be seen if the people evacuated will even be able to return for weeks. Some islands will have to be completely rebuilt from the ground up.
Irma's rath to Key West.
(Photo courtesy of CNN.com)
The Double Edged Sword
Although we are always stoked to see the endless barrels peeling perfectly down the line, keep in mind that this is coming at a cost. Our fun locally is someone elses devastation abroad. I'm not saying that we can't go out and party when when it's going off, but nature has blessed us with the gift of these many swells, it is only right that we give back to those who are paying the price for them.
How you can help.
Here is a list of just some of the organizations entrenched in the recovery. Donate whatever you can... money, supplies, time... whatever you can.
In all, the Atlantic is more then welcome to produce storm after storm. Just as long as they stay out to see, it is just fine with us. The increased swell without the damage and devastation makes for the perfect session, hopefully we can see a few of these tropical giants take that path.